Manufacturers comment on spring budget

Commenting on the Budget Statement today, Frank Kaye, interim region director in the South West for EEF, the manufacturers’ organisation said: “Current economic indicators offer the Chancellor confidence about the resilience of the UK economy, but we remain some way off from possible Brexit uncertainty. As such, the Chancellor is right to be pragmatic, recognising the need to avoid jam today and saving the fiscal jam tomorrow to use wisely if the economy encounters turbulence during the process of exit from the EU.

“This statement shows government sticking with the challenge of raising productivity levels in the UK economy, this alignment with the industrial strategy priorities will be welcomed by businesses as demonstrating signs of much-needed cross-government coherence.

“While this Budget doesn’t have all the answers to our future growth challenges, the evolution of the R&D tax credit, action on digital infrastructure and regional road networks, together with additional investment in technical skills and lifelong learning is a solid foundation on which future statements must build.

“Manufacturers will, however, be very frustrated by the positive headlines that might be generated by the action on Business rates which did not extend to the removal of plant and machinery that could have added further to the overall productivity package.”

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